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Here are the world's best convertibles

Dhiram Shah takes stock of the world’s best convertibles to look back on

August 21, 2018 04:35 pm | Updated August 22, 2018 01:57 pm IST

 Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse

Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse

Jaguar E-Type Series I (1961-68)

With a 241 kmph top speed and sub-7-second 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) acceleration in the early ‘60s and novelties like monocoque construction, disc brakes and independent rear suspension, the British sports car was light years ahead of its rivals. The styling was inspired by the legendary Jaguar D-Type racing car while 265bhp, 3.8-litre, straight-six engine was sourced from the XK. On its debut at the Geneva Motor Show in March 1961, Enzo Ferrari famously called it “the most beautiful car in the world”.

Ford Mustang (1964)

 Ford Mustang

Ford Mustang


Often referred to as the 1964½ model, it went on to single-handedly start the whole muscle-car phenomenon. The convertible Mustang was such a massive hit upon its debut that it became the highest selling top-down car by 1966, outselling the Impala by almost double the numbers. The Mustang’s long and illustrious association with the silver screen also began with this car. In the James Bond movie Goldfinger, a cream Ford Mustang convertible features in the famous chase sequence.

Shelby Cobra (1962-67)

The car that made racer and car designer Carroll Shelby an automotive legend. The sports car was born in 1961 when Shelby wrote to British manufacturer AC Cars to build him a two-seat racing car modified to fit a V8 engine. Ford decided to supply their small block 4.3-litre V8 engine in a move to rival the Chevrolet Corvette, and that’s how one of the most iconic cars came into being. Today, the Shelby Cobra is counted in the top collectible cars with prices averaging close to the million-dollar mark. Carroll Shelby’s own Cobra was sold in 2016 for a record-breaking $13.75 million (approx. INR 94 Cr.)

Porsche 356 Speedster (1954)

The Porsche 356 was the first production automobile of the German company, built between 1948 and 1965. The two-door sports car went on to become the foundation on which the iconic Porsche 911 is built. Although, the 356 was available in a cabriolets variant from the beginning, Porsche introduced the Speedster in 1954 which was based on the Type 1. The charming Speedster was built for the American market and was designed with minimum production cost in mind. The simple canvas top, side curtains and steeply raked windshield gave it a distinct look and helped it become an instant hit in the United States.

Bugatti Veyron Grand Sport Vitesse (2012-2015)

The Grand Sport Vitesse is the targa top version of the Bugatti Veyron Super Sport, a car that held the record for the fastest production till recently. Making its debut at the 2012 Geneva Motor Show, the Grand Sport Vitesse came with the same 8.0-litre, quad-turbocharged, W16 engine like its coupe version that produces 987 horsepower. The hypercar went on to set its own record and became the fastest open-top production sports car, with speed of 408.84 kmph. Bugatti built 150 examples of the roadster with a starting price of €1.69 million (approx. INR 13.5 Cr.)

Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder

 Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder

Ferrari 250 GT California Spyder


The 250 series had several variants between 1953 and 1964, and the GT California Spyder in one of them. Created specifically for North America, the 250 car was Italian designer Sergio Scaglietti's interpretation of an open-top 250 GT. Built in both short-wheelbase and long-wheelbase variants, the GT California Spyder came with a 3.0-litre V12 that produced 276bhp and helped it attain a top speed of 225kmph. Today, the open-top racing car is considered as one of the rarest and most valuable classic cars. In 2016, a SWB version was sold for £17million (about INR 152 Cr.)


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